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Sierra Leone: Bio Secures Second Term

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Sierra Leone’s President Julius Maada Bio was re-elected to serve a second term with 56.17 percent of the vote, the head of the electoral commission said Tuesday, prompting the runner-up to “categorically reject” the result.

Bio’s main challenger Samura Kamara, who came second with 41.16 percent of the vote according to final results announced in Freetown, branded the result “not credible”.

“I categorically reject the outcome so announced by the electoral commission,” he said on Twitter.

Vote tallying had already been disputed by Kamara’s All People’s Congress (APC), which condemned in a statement Monday an alleged lack of inclusiveness, transparency and responsibility by the electoral commission.

The party pointed to the lack of information about which polling stations or districts the ballots were coming from.

It had said it “will not accept these fake and cooked up results”.

In a later statement, the party alleged “overvoting” in some areas and said it “continues to reject” the “fabricated results” and “reaffirms our victory”.

But Bio’s supporters welcomed the result.

“I’m happy Bio won, we want him to fix the economy and create jobs,” Susan Myers, 34, said.

Musa Tholluy, 27, said she was happy because her “president was just re-elected. He’s doing great things for this country. He is fighting corruption”.

At a press conference Monday, European Union observers said a lack of transparency and communication by the electoral authority had led to mistrust in the electoral process.

The monitors said they witnessed violence at seven polling stations during voting hours and at three others during the closing and counting stages.


Written by: Kevin Nwabueze

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